my day started as it usually does - taking the bean to school. the plan was for the teen to pick her up and then they'd meet me down at disneyland afterwards, and as i was getting back in the car to head back home to drop off the car seat for her, she texted me. "want starbucks?" she asked. well...you don't have to ask me twice. ever. and when i got home, she'd already headed back to school and in the fridge was my birthday breakfast beverage.
she's the best. she has about a half hour between the end of her zero period and the beginning of the next class, and she spent it going to the 'bucks, dropping off my drink, and heading back. of course, it helps that she has an assigned spot this year and doesn't have to worry about parking.
despite the fact that it was still rush hour, i managed to avoid traffic all the way down to anaheim and got there in the usual 30 minutes. sweet. even better, i scored a fabulous parking spot right next to the exit of the parking garage. if you've ever been to this structure, you'll know what a pain in the ass it is to get out of there at the end of the night. as for me, i was situated directly in front of the exit. so when it was time to go, all i had to do was make one quick right turn and i was outta there. so awesome.
to kick things off right, i decided to try my luck at the single rider line for the race cars at california adventure.
as i went through the turnstile, i received my first birthday greeting of the day from the cast member who scanned my pass. she told me where i needed to go for my button, and i skedaddled right over.
no one else was in there, and the girls in there took one look at the tiara i was wearing (what? it was birthday princess day, people), pulled a button out, and got the sharpie ready. i put it right on, went back outside, and found an old friend practically waiting for me to come and say hello.
on my way to cars land, i strode right past the ridonkulous line for radiator springs raceway fastpasses. the line for those tickets was longer than my mousewait app said the wait was to get on the ride. craziness.
i scooted right past the crowds and into the entrance for the single rider line, and i shit you not - within fifteen minutes, i was sitting pretty in one of the race cars.
as i paused to have one of the park photographers take this shot, i was totally sniped at by some lady who wanted a picture of her son in front of the sign. didn't matter that i'd gotten myself into position first. and it was my birthday, dammit! but whatever. i just gave her an "eat shit" grin and told her to have a wonderful day. i was determined to have an awesome day and not to let anything piss me off, no matter what.
hanging out, just me and walt.
and pluto, too.
by then, i was ready for a change of scenery. haha! as if i'd been there for hours. and so off i went, across the esplanade and into the OG side of the resort.
knowing that it had already undergone its halloweentime transformation, i made a beeline for space mountain. the posted wait time was only 15 minutes, which sounded pretty good to me.
except that right as i got into the building, with the ride just out of reach...it broke down. i figured i'd just wait it out like we've done in the past, allowing hordes of folks ahead of me to squeeze through towards the exits. but when the lights came on and they started escorting folks out of the ride itself, i knew waiting was in vain.
see that picture? I SHOULD'VE BEEN IN IT.
oh well. i ended up with a fastpass good for up to six people for any ride in the park.
the next best thing to space mountain, for me, is the matterhorn. with the line winding around the mountain, i sashayed right up to the single rider entrance and walked right on. no fuss, no muss, no waiting.
right about then i realized that my head was beginning to ache from my tiara, digging into my scalp. ah, such a first world problem.
lunchtime! yup, that sure is a giant turkey leg and a mint julep.
next up, thunder mountain railroad.
i posed for another photographer before heading back across the way into california adventure for a quick stop at the hollywood tower hotel, aka the tower of terror.
posted wait time: a lucky 13 minutes. hardy har har. i actually didn't even wait that long - walked right on.
it was a pretty hot day, with the temps hovering somewhere in the mid-90s. ugh. and with all the sweating i was doing, i was feeling a bit...parched. so what's a girl to do when she's all by her lonesome with nothing but time on her hands at california adventure? well, duh. i walked right into the fabulous carthay circle restaurant and plunked my happy ass into a comfy stool in the lounge.
after perusing the menu, i settled on a lovely, refreshing pimm's punch.
because i love it so, i made my way back into cars land and got in the single rider line for a repeat of the race cars ride.
and because the line just kept getting shorter, i went again.
just as i was getting onto the toy story mania ride, i got a text from the teen. "we're getting on the tram," she said. hooray!
on my way to meet up with the girls, i found my favorite character from "monsters, inc." sadly for me, he was just leaving as i got in line for a photo op. oh, well.
the bean loves the monsters, inc. ride, so that was the first thing we did together. and then afterwards, we stumbled upon this - an extended trailer for the upcoming movie "frankenweenie" - in 3D!
since the buena vista street and cars land portions of the park opened in june, we hadn't been on "soarin' over california" in a long time. and like the rest of the attractions, the line was non-existent and we were queued up to board in no time. well, there was just enough time for a little silliness as the bean made faux pouty faces at us. and yes, i sure did buy myself a cute disneyland shirt and promptly change into it.
because it was still a school night - which also means that the parks close early, like 8 - we went over to disneyland to find some dinner before heading home. the bean was really excited to find one of her friends on his way to pose for pictures with parkgoers.
back at home, despite her tiredness, the bean stayed up long enough to watch me open my presents. now, i wasn't actually expecting anything as we'd bought renewals for our annual passes earlier this summer. remember, the passes were my present last year - and then they raised the prices by an exorbitant amount, so we'd snapped them up at the old price and are holding onto them for after these are done.
anyway, i really had no idea what to expect as i tore into the wrapping paper.
and then i was super surprised and ecstatic as it revealed a cutout of the just-announced iPhone 5!
am i a lucky girl, or what? ah, the hub. always throwing me a curve ball, that guy. ain't he the best?